Syma is the spiritual successor to Scima Invasion Crew (SIC). While SIC was fun to play about with the concept, after a while I started to feel like I was cramping it’s style by trying to cram too much extra stuff in when there was no plan for it in the original. SIC was, after all, designed as a two-day-to-make game.
Syma is a reimagining of that concept in the form of a Hub-Based Missions system that allows me to glue on extra content whenever and wherever I feel like it, as I come up with it, without affecting the style or theme of the game.
Overall it contains most of the basic stuff that SIC had, but in a much neater and more refined way, as well as containing several new tilesets, classes, scripts and challenges!
I consider the game technically complete, as the core gameplay is all there and working: the missions, classes, skills, levels etc. Everything fundamental is there and working, and from now on there’ll only be additions and updates. Instead of try to just pointlessly define when it’s completed and never update it again, I’ve decided to declare it complete now, and update it MMO style every so often as I come up with new content in the guise of “Episodes”.
Not that there’s nothing in it already! By now, it’s already in Episode V and includes hours of gameplay and over a dozen missions, and Episode VI includes more classes, side missions and more options overall.
Since I update it just as and when I feel there’s enough new content to justify an update, I don’t want to have to sit and reupload stuff to Mediafire every time then run around updating hyperlinks, so instead of focussing my attention on RMN, where I can just update the file freely and easily. RMN also has more screenies than I have on this blog, as well as more in-depth information and better coverage of the features:
Syma on RMN!
v1.0 of the game has been released now. It appears to be bug free and runs smoothly enough. After several test runs and countless boss checks using various combos, it appears to be balanced enough across the board. All bosses in the game are defeatable with all combinations I tried (including the new secret boss!) and the Boss Rush is now possible to complete.
Download at Mediafire or from RMN.
On RMN I’ll be leaving a page for Bug Reports and another for class combinations for anyone interested in letting me know what they succeeded with; I’ve far from tried all possible combinations!
The Wee Hero links have been updated a couple of times to now reach v1.2
There are no major changes here; just a bit of polish and some bug fixes or removing testing-related stuff I forgot to take out before the compression. All mediafire links have been updated with the new version and the RMN link has the new version too.
List of Changes
So, I’m fairly satisfied I cleared away all the bugs and other smaller things that needed polishing up (although items and weapons are still yet to be renamed). I imagine there’ll be a few things I missed, but pretty sure that if there are any, they’ll be smaller things (with any luck!). If anything like that gets found though, I can fix it and update the demo.
Anyhoo! The demo.
The demo covers the first island: Nuirmu. This includes three dungeons, fourteen bosses (all but one are optional) and multiple paths to reach the end of the Demo; any or all of which can be taken to get there.
Reaching the end of the demo gives an option to play about a bit by getting instant level ups, free materials and items etc as well as an option to randomly fight a boss. There’s also a “Boss Rush” option to fight multiple bosses all one after the other!
Hopefully it’ll be better balanced and more polished up than the Alpha Test (there are plenty of small things that have been changed!) but anything found or any ideas towards the project are welcomed; just get in touch.
So I’m fairly certain it’s ready for some hardcore balance and bug testing now. I’ve been through it a couple times looking for anything major and am pretty sure it’s all cleaned up and ready to go. Now it’s just a matter of finding the balance issues and problems that only fresh eyes will be able to spot.
So, to that end, I’ve compressed a demo ready for Alpha Testing outside of the couple of us that have been staring at it every day.
The Alpha Demo for Testing can be downloaded here. It will be up on RMN as well as soon as the site decides it likes me again and will actually let me upload it.
Notes about this Alpha:
- Any report is helpful at all. I’m not expecting a huge bug report full of every tiny detail that went missed. Just try and have fun (with what’s there) if you can and let me know if you see anything that needs fixing, or have a suggestion to make [something] better or improved.
- I clocked about 1hr30 on my last playthrough, but I knew exactly where to go to check everything and rushed a fair bit to get everything possible checked. Playtime may vary depending on what you do or where you go first. I don’t expect you to go through the whole thing; any report is useful
- Saying that, the “end” of the Alpha is at the Tower on the far east side of the island. There are three methods to reach it, any or all of which can be taken. Once at the tower, you will have the option of levelling up, receiving materials and gold, and fighting random bosses without penalty. This is mostly for fun, but does allow testing of things at a faster rate.
- There are 8 bosses; every single one of which is optional in the sense that you do not have to fight a boss to reach the Tower, however some bosses will block the way through other paths. Not all bosses have to be fought even when encountered, however. They vary in difficulty greatly, especially depending on level and gear.
- There is a Ship that can be acquired to sail around the island at a much more leisurely pace than running through all the maps again.
- There are virtually no flavour NPCs or fluff in the game yet. It mostly consists of relevant (shops, inns etc) or tutorial NPCs and bosses. In the third village there are some pointless NPCs though.
- Not everything has a purpose built in yet. There are a few things that can be found or seen that seem to have no purpose whatsoever: you’re not blind, they just don’t have it yet. Examples of this are the house to the upper left in the Village Centre, and the “Old man walking down the path” random-map, who doesn’t say anything yet.
- The two real dungeons are both pretty linear and single-directional right now. They will have split-paths and dead ends added to them later, but were just left as a straight path for the time being during the testing phase.
- Material collection and enemy difficulty curves might be a bit wonky with the random settings for pickups and the dynamic enemy levelling, so it might feel schizophrenic depending on what you do. Hopefully it won’t be too bad, but do let me know if something specific or extreme occurs.
- There’s no shame in giving up on the Malevolent Lady
But aye! Thank-you to anyone who does check it out. Hopefully it won’t disappoint and will continue to improve from these tests. Shouldn’t be long before getting a legitimate Demo out with all the bells & whistles
So, the short got finished at last. It may be up for some changes here and there, depending on what might get thunk up, but for the time being, we’ll call it finished. Since I have no experience with horror games and wasn’t putting in enough time to it, working on it solo, it’s become more of an atmospheric exploration game. There’s the short sub-story of finding the cure, but that’s fairly easy and doesn’t take you off the beaten path too much. It’s not that hard to find your way through the game as it’s fairly linear, and most of the rooms are there purely for aesthetics sake, but skipping them will probably cause you to not find the cure and finish the game without it.
Saying that, there’s two “endings” to the game, although the only difference is the final text boxes and nothing overall actually gets changed.
Either way, here it is. It should only take 15~20 mins to go through it all, assuming you read the text and aren’t rushing, and there are some things that are to be “found” and will be easily missed by just pushing forwards, including a secret access to the roof (which contains one of the Notes). Either way, just a short game for the contests’ sake that I wanted to get finished now before college started, or I might never get it done, so…enjoy!
The Quest Journal is a fantastic script written by modern algebra, and I’ve been using it in most of my projects so far, including DotI. It catalogues your quests and allows you to reveal and complete objectives individually, as well as add your own categories and even change the appearance of the menu. It’s easy to run, with simple script calls and extensive instruction within the script to explain every last option available, and is one of the first scripts I used after getting VXA.
However, a lot of folk have been asking for a demo (and truth to be told, I wouldn’t have minded one myself) but as modern has been too busy to get a demo made (since, as I said, there’re quite a lot of options) I offered to make a short demo to cover the basics of it. It’s a quick, non-combat, five minute run through covering the simpler things such as receiving quests, revealing and completing objectives, finishing quests off and repeating quests and objectives. It only covers a small flower-picking mission in a tiny wooded area, but should explain well enough how to get started with the script until modern manages to make up a full demo with the more complex aspects.